Tag Archives: pittsburgh

The Best of Summer 2016 Part IV…Free Time Activities

When I was a kid, the onset of summer meant one thing and one thing only – NO SCHOOL! And since the responsibilities associated with school (waking up early, doing homework, wearing shoes) represented the bulk of my adolescent life’s burdens, summer brought with it three solid months of unbridled freedom that as a grownup I’ll never know again. #FirstWorldAdultProblems

Thankfully, every now and then I’m #blessed with a handful of weekend moments that aren’t prescheduled with activities or encumbered by parental responsibilities (Daddy, come wipe my butt!). I prefer to make use of these respites by indulging in the same unproductive pastimes that I did as a youth – reading comic books and watching professional wrestling.

My friend Elizabeth is a super-busy mommy/lawyer/blogger who cherishes her infrequent free time just as much as me. She was kind enough to carve some time out of her packed schedule to suggest some relaxing ways for all of us to spend those precious obligation-free moments. Surprisingly, none of them involve musclebound men beating the crap out of each other.

I remember those many long years ago, before I had a 5 year old who poked me in the face and demanded I pour her a bowl of rice krispies at 6am, I used to have these long, leisurely weekend mornings where I could do whatever I wanted, for as long as I wanted, and still find time in the day to go for a run, go grocery shopping, and whatever else I felt like doing.

Those days are gone. Now most weekend mornings are consumed by ballet lessons, kid-related social plans, and this, that and the other thing. I recently was surprised by a morning that was completely obligation-free, and I realized how precious that unplanned free time is. For my contribution to this “Best of….” series, I would like to share with you my favorite activities when I have a few unexpected moments to myself!

Baking Bread


When I was in law school and a baby lawyer, somehow I had all this extra time that I didn’t even know I had. I got really into baking bread, and baked loaf after loaf trying to perfect my challah recipe. Bread baking is really easy to do at a somewhat competent level, but extremely hard to perfect. I love mixing the dough and then putting it out in the sunshine to rise, and I love enjoying its smell as it bakes in the oven, especially when I have mixed in rosemary, basil or sun dried tomatoes.

Coffee and Magazines


The magic combination. I have several magazine subscriptions but can never manage to read them as they come in. They buildup in a massive pile in my dining room. When I finally get to reading them, I experience the twofold joy of reading the magazine, and also clearing things out of the “to read” pile. Also, coffee. Yum.

Stroll through the Park


I haven’t been able to get back to running as regularly as I would like. I would like to run 5 times a week, but lately I have only been running about one. My favorite places to run are Frick Park, Schenley Park and the Homewood Cemetery. They are all wooded, beautiful and tranquil.

At Home Spa


It’s $8 for a pack of 4 bottles but HEAR ME OUT, Dry Water is like a tiny spa. They have flavors like cucumber, ginger and lavender, the flavor is heavily infused, not sweet, and tastes just like the water you are served at a spa. This is not an everyday type beverage. Rather, this is the kind of thing you sip leisurely, with a refreshing sheet mask on your face. It is so incredibly relaxing. When I bust out with the Dry Water and the sheet mask, my husband knows to keep my kid out of the way, because I am getting in the relaxation zone.

Best of Summer

art, life, & CULTURE, , , , , , , ,

The Best of Summer 2016 Part III…Day Tripping

“Summer afternoon – summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” – Henry James

Whereas the cold winters of Pittsburgh are prefect for staying indoors and binge-watching Netflix, summer is all about getting ahht of the house to explore the great attractions that our lovely region has to offer. And who better to give us some suggestions on how to get the most out of these summer days than a school teacher? 

After spending the past nine months steadfastly preparing the young minds of Woodland Hills to lead us into the future, my buddy Heidi is now here with some daytrip ideas that are full of adventure and fun. I look forward to fitting them all into my schedule…between my mandatory hammock-naps of course!

Hey y’all! One of the best parts about living in Pittsburgh is the wide array of destinations and restaurants that are well within driving distance. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t like a little “daycation” from time to time? With brief travel time and minimal packing, daycations are an activity that Pittsburghers should embrace wholeheartedly. Thus, for this post, I would like to share with you some of my favorite spots in the Laurel Highlands that everyone in the area should visit this summer.* Now let’s go day tripping!


The Stone House Restaurant & Inn (3023 National Pike | Farmington, PA | 15437) is a classic spot along Route 40, our National Road. With charm, character(s) and a fantastic menu, The Stone House has something for everyone. Special events are common, especially live music and bike nights. My advice? Try the wings ($5/5, $10/10, $14/15), the salads and anything that incorporates their house sauces and dressings; grab a bottle of Pittsburgh Winery wine while you are there too!

Out of the Fire Café (3784 State Route 31 |Donegal, Pennsylvania | 15628) is a casual BYOB restaurant. With an open kitchen, Out of the Fire offers an American menu that patrons can enjoy from inside of on their deck. The view is beautiful and the location is in close proximity to many mountain attractions. My advice? Try the Sea Scallops ($32, coconut and cilantro risotto, roasted red pepper, mango & arugula salad, Fuji apple vinaigrette) and/or the Charred Pineapple Salad ($13, field greens, kiwi, red grapes, cherry tomatoes, toasted cashews, blueberry balsamic vinaigrette).


Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater (1491 Mill Run Road | Mill Run, PA | 15464) and Kentuck Knob (723 Kentuck Road | Chalk Hill, PA | 15421) are architectural masterpieces tucked away in the Fayette County mountains. With a little planning, you can either visit one on its own, or arrange to see both in the same day. I happen to be an architecture fanatic, and I’ve seen both of these houses in many seasons both on their own and in the same day. The local history associated with the homes is fascinating, the grounds are picturesque, and the gift shops are quite marvelous. My advice? Don’t miss the opportunity to see something that thousands of people travel from all over the world to see every year. And get your tickets way in advance!


Fort Necessity National Battlefield (1 Washington Parkway | Farmington, PA | 15437) is a worthy stop along Route 40. With the popularity of Hamilton: An American Musical on a steady rise, this is a great place for fans and history buffs who are interested in George Washington lore. See where Washington opened the action of the French and Indian War in 1754, ultimately setting the American Revolution in motion. Jumonville Glen and General Braddock’s Grave are also nearby, for a bonus round! My advice? Ask them if they remember the girl who won an art contest there in 1990; she created an epic rendition of Washington’s life called “The Cherry Tree of Life.” Ha! Kidding. No one needs to bring up my short-lived career in the visual arts.

*I left off Laurel Highlands juggernauts like Ohiopyle and Nemacolin Woodlands because of the likelihood that yinz have already been there. Not that I wouldn’t work stops at either of these into a daycation from Pittsburgh, but I wanted to bring to light some lesser known attractions.

Best of Summer

art, life, & CULTURE, restaurant REVIEWS, , , , , , ,

The Best of Summer 2016 Part II…Beer

I’ve done extensive scientific research into the subject of chillaxation, which is defined as “a state of total tranquility that comprises both the restfulness of body (chilling) and peacefulness of mind (relaxation)”. As it turns out, there’s no better activity to achieve this blissful state than enjoying a cold beer on a hot day.

I’ve enlisted my childhood friend Monica to help substantiate my hypothesis. Along with holding a PhD in Infectious Diseases and Microbiology, she’s also conducted numerous field studies at the establishments that make up our region’s exploding craft beer and microbrewery scene. Monica is now going to report on her research by giving us some beverage suggestions that are guaranteed to maximize your chillaxation all summer long!

(First off, I have a short confession to the readers: I don’t like hoppy beer. My IBU scanning of selections usually have me choosing the lowest numbers by default. If you are a hop head, you’re likely not going to have fun with the following.)

In the regional area, there are approximately 70 breweries. The boyfriend and I have a list and a google map and are slowly visiting them all. Hell, we even made it to Milkman Brewing and they were open for approximately 20 minutes. There are many beers that we can consider both local and good for summer drinking. Not all of my suggestions are local, but many are. Support your local brewer.

This being said, I’m also a big qualifier of information. I have a thing for parenthetical comments. When I’m asked a question, I instantly go through the multitude of answers that could be correct, and qualify when each answer is appropriate. I thought that it would be most helpful to have a list of common summer situations in which beer is the appropriate answer and then qualify them. Here it goes:

The “I just spent a ridiculous time performing lawn maintenance in 90F weather for a lawn that I only go in to mow” beer.

The appropriate beer here is one that won’t be contaminated by the taste of the sweat running down your face or the smell of grass stuck in your nose. It won’t be super high in ABV, nor will it be super astringent. This beer will quench your thirst, but also give you a taste of something that will remind you of something other than lawn work. It’s not a savoring beer, it is a thirst quenching beer. (Yes, I do my own lawn work.)

I’m recommending a Doc G’s beer called “Orange Blossom Wheat”. It’s a 4.8% ABV with a hit of orange. It is all of the things that I think go well with a shitty lawn job. Now, you all can go over to yelp and look at the reviews of this place (it’s in DuBois), and well, they’re not good. What I can say is that I have insider information that the brewer has changed, and this will likely impact your beer enjoyment.

The “It’s Friday, my coworkers have the intelligence of horseshoe crabs, and I need to go in tomorrow anyway” beer.

Sometimes you need to sit at a patio and bitch about life while sipping a beer. This calls for a quality drink. You can have a couple of drinks, but then you realize that real life is going to set in early tomorrow, so you want to make them count. You want something that is a pleasant taste and buzz, and go well with that water you’re going to have after them.

I’m recommending the Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale by Alltech’s Lexington Brewing and Distilling. It’s 8.19% ABV is going to have you pleasantly forgetting about the idiots you work with and have you moving to a discussion about what you’re going to do on vacation. (I’m calling this local because you can get it at Giant Eagle.)


The “I’m being forced to spend time with my family” beer.

If you are obligated to spend time with your family and need beer to get through it (and they’re of the Bud Light variety), you are going to need a beer that satisfies several criteria. One, it must be worth it to take to the location. Two, it’s going to have to be something that someone else is not going to want to steal. Three, it likely has to not be too heavy as to not compete with the potato salad. Four, it needs to be a session beer (We know what you think of your cousin’s new boyfriend, but we don’t need to do this now).

I’m recommending the Ellicottville Brewing Company’s Blueberry Wheat beer. It’s fruity, so all of the old white-beards in the family aren’t going to want any. It’s a lighter wheat beer, and it’s just a hint of blueberry, so it goes well with the standard cookout fare. Lastly, it only has a 4.8 ABV, so you can finish the 6-pack while the rest of the family is harping on you to get married.

The “F*@K this I’m out, night before vacation” beer.

Sometimes you can be one of those people that packed for vacation 2 days before you leave. Other times you need to walk out of work realizing that you have to get up at 6 AM for the flight and haven’t washed clothes for 2 weeks. When the latter happens, you can hole up at a local brewery (bonus points if there’s a food truck and the mayor is wearing shorts) and have a beer or two. Because, really, you’re going to sleep on the plane anyway.

While I said that I’m no fan of hops, for some reason the hops I do like are the Nelson hops. These New Zealand based hops aren’t nearly as piney to me, and provide a nice astringent taste and a floral aroma that’s refreshing.

For pre-gaming vacation, I suggest Brew Gentlemen’s Nelson Saison (ABV 6.0%). This beer says “I’m only packing what I need for the beach”.

The “Sitting around the bonfire watching the stars” beer.

Sometimes you need a relaxing evening with friends, sitting around a summer bonfire, picking out the constellations in the sky. It’s way after dinner at this point, you don’t have any plans in the morning, and sitting and chatting are the only thing you want to do. Not high level work discussion, not philosophical discussions about what the world looks like to you, just telling stories and shit-talking your friends.

To save the best for last, I’m imploring you to get some of Helltown’s Hefeweizen (5% ABV). It’s the sitting around beer. It’s the ‘hold my beer so I can tell this story with hand movements’ beer. It’s the beer of friendship and remembering who has the embarrassing pictures of you as a child.

Best of Summer

art, life, & CULTURE, restaurant REVIEWS, , , , ,

The Best of Summer 2016 Part I…Music

Welcome to the first installment in a series of posts celebrating the start of summer sixteen. Kicking off the festivities is a hot af mixtape by Pittsburgh’s bestest audio scientist RJ 2020k. After enjoying the tunes below, please be sure to check out RJ’s website here and follow him on the twitter @twenty20k!


Side A
1) Since I Left You by The Avalanches
2) Runaway by Electric Youth
3) Empty Threat by Chvrches
4) Hex Girlfriend by Neon Indian
5) Back That Thang Up by Juvenile
6) Ain’t 2 Proud 2 Beg by TLC

Side B
7) Be Thankful For What You’ve Got by Massive Attack
8) Good Time by Brazilian Girls
9) High Road (Baio Remix) by Cults
10) C’mon by Kesha
11) I Get Around by 2Pac
12) Two Months Off by Underworld

BONUS TRACK: Everybody Loves The Sunshine by Roy Ayers

Liner Notes: Normally, my mixtapes are well thought-out concepts so I thought it would be fun to destroy the concept and list the most high energy, sonically sunshine-stained songs I could possibly think of.

Layered Electronic tracks, high energy throwback Rap, glittery Pop, well-known and obscure names proudly litter this track list. There’s something for everyone, so get in your car and turn this up!

As caffeinated and random as this playlist is, there are two songs in particular that I would like to point out as having significance: The Delta Foundation booking Kesha’s appearance at Pittsburgh’s 2016 Pride in the Street was a bold, rightfully supportive move that brought me to tears so “C’Mon” is my way of showing support to both parties (I’ll obviously be roaming the streets that day, so come say hey!).

The Roy Ayers inclusion is a funny one because I was Googling “Everybodylovesyou.net” to look at previous playlists and “Everybody Loves The Sunshine” popped up, so the iconic song was thrown in as a bonus track as a nod to this lovely website.



Best of Summer

art, life, & CULTURE, mixtape MONDAYS, , , , , , , , , ,

The Week in Tweets – June 17, 2016

It’s the freaking weekend baby and I’m about to have me some fun…at Kennywood! Tomorrow is my wife’s work picnic at “America’s Finest Traditional Amusement Park”, and I am very excited to blow my diet all to hell.

My son is still a little too small to ride much of anything, so my day will just consist of two activities – eating and walking to the next place to eat. My plan is to consume as much fudge, funnel cakes, Golden Nugget Dip-Cones, Dip-n-Dots, corndogs and Potato Patch fries as I can until the button on my jorts pop.

But before I undo every healthy decision that I’ve made all year, let’s get on to a food-centric yet calorie-free installment of the Week in Tweets!

11) Tony (@Tmoney68)

Found an old Big Wheel at a yard sale! The child in me said, “Buy it & ride it!” but the adult in me said, “Buy it, get drunk and ride it!”

The carefree recklessness associated with getting drunk is really similar to being a toddler again…especially if you end up peeing your pants.

10) Chocolate Moose (@moose_chocolate)

Monterrey Jack is my favourite cheese that sounds like it was named after a villain in a low budget Western

Colby and Brie are my favorite cheeses that sound like they were named after a set of fraternal Caucasian twins.

9) ssssss. (@semple42)

Is drunk-running a thing?

It is when you’re seventeen and the cops show up at Zelda’s Greenhouse…

8) Shellz (@HeyoShellz)

[during phone sex]

Him: Are you chewing?

Remember, you can’t spell intercourse without S-C-O-N-E!

7) LTB (@_Tempo11)

Neighbor: You look like you’ve lost weight

Me blushing: Thank you I’ve lost a lot of blood

I’d definitely be at my goal weight if it wasn’t for all this stupid blood…

6) Amy Dillon (@amydillon)

A 7-year-old boy is 80% crashing baby horse limbs and 20% Minecraft facts.

My 3-year old boy is 10% interrogations, 10% tantrums and 80% mac & cheese.

5) Sabina Kid (@SabinaKid)

I have Resting Kind Face. People still try to chat me up when I’m fantasizing about setting them on fire.

I’ve come to the realization that I only have three expressions – resting bitch face, busy bitch face and sleeping bitch face.

4) Nick (@NickC46)

Green tea tastes like it must be good for you.

Much like a visit to my parents’ house, green tea is much more palatable when mixed with a lot of alcohol…

3) The Bice Is Right (@Pro_Jones_)

Waiter: *grating cheese* say when




Waiter: Sir that was the entire block of cheese

Me: *leans in way too close* Go get another

I ordered a Tour of Italy back in March at the Olive Garden and left as the waiter started to grate the cheese over it. I’m thinking that it’s just about time to head back and say “when”…

2) Lady Lawya (@Parkerlawyer)

If throwing empty bottles of shampoo from the shower to the bathroom trash can were an Olympic sport, I’d be like, maybe a bronze medalist.

If “filling up empty bottles of shampoo with water because you’re too lazy to stop the shower to go get a new one” was an Olympic sport, I’d have more gold medals than Michael Phelps!

1) Jeannie (@JeannieG40)

I have very little in common with people who aren’t me.

Ditto! I also have very little in common with people who aren’t cats.

Speaking of cats, below is a pic of Rachel working on the railroad…all the live-long day. Have a wonderful weekend everybody!


week in TWEETS, , , , , , ,

My Mixtape Monday – June 13, 2016

First Name: Alicia
Twitter: @alicia_staples
Sex: Female
Age: 30

Occupation: Social Media Director and Consultant, Bartender (@mrsmallstheatre), Podcast Host (@mmoviespod)

Mixtape Name: Alicia_Staples Mixtape

Side A
1) Tenderness by General Public
2) In Between Days by The Cure
3) Desperate Guys by The Faint
4) Speakers Push Air by Pretty Girls Make Graves
5) Gold Guns Girls by Metric
6) Bruise Pristine by Placebo

Side B
7) Saddam A Go Go by Gwar
8) Whamola by The Les Claypool Frog Brigade
9) Venus Fly by Grimes
10) Disparate Youth by Santigold
11) Space Age Love Song by Flock of Seagulls
12) Damn These Vampires by The Mountain Goats

Liner Notes: It’s exceedingly difficult and endlessly entertaining to capture your own personality in a 12 song mixtape. I tossed around some theme ideas – “Movie theme songs that are deservedly under appreciated”, “Best songs to stoically cry to while in public”, “Songs I pretend not to know every word to” – all of which I could easily build. However, I decided autobiographical (in the style of Rob Gordon) was more appropriate for this task.

Each song links to an important event, relationship, or time frame for me – ever so lovingly arranged for a listener who has no idea and/or no interest in the personal baggage I have attached to each. Side A has a nice easy new wave into post punk/glam rock thing going on while Side B is frenetic and soothing crossing the genre map.

Spotify Playlist Link: Alicia_Staples Mixtape (with bonus tracks)


mixtape MONDAYS, , , , , , ,

The Week in Tweets – June 3, 2016

Let’s Go Pens! Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get on to an all-new Week in Tweets!

9) Buck4itt (@buck4itt)

We’re all just two or three Instagram filters from being the person we really want to be.

Do Instagram filters work on personalities? I could really benefit from X Pro II putting a nice soft edge on my passive-aggressiveness…

8) mark (@TheCatWhisprer)

Any time I see someone at my job with bad hair or makeup I immediately assume that person is an Undercover Boss.

I used to think that too but unfortunately it always just turns out to be someone from IT…

7) beth loves cake, so (@bourgeoisalien)

There should be a museum of good places to sit.

Yes! My first thought whenever I leave my house to go anywhere is “when can I sit down”.

6) Martin Munson (@wickedimproper)


“Can you hold scissors?”


“Welcome to SuperCuts”

Despite being known as the Arby’s of hair salons, I would have given anything for my parents to have taken me to SuperCuts when I was a kid. Alas, a combination of parsimony and blind faith in his own barbering skills meant that my Dad gave me the majority of my adolescent haircuts.

Compounding the disaster was the fact that I came of age in the 90s. I got to live through everything from the Joey Lawrence bowl cut to the Jaromir Jagr mullet to the shaved lines of Vanilla Ice…temples AND eyebrows! My Mother even joined in on the fun once and gave me a perm.

Though they saved a lot of money by avoiding hair salons, it’s now costing me thousands in therapist bills to deal with the childhood trauma…

5) ♥️ (@SMASEY)

I went into defense mood at this buffet and took every available crab rangoon and now I have entirely too many crab rangoons please help

“Too many crab rangoons” is definitely my new favorite #FirstWorldProblem…

4) Dirt McTurd (@DirtMcTurd)

Remember when people were excited about True Detective season 2, and then it came out LOL

I heard that the plot of True Detective Season 3 involves two neighboring county sheriffs in Arizona (played by Kevin Coster and Jennifer Lopez) joining forces to get to the bottom of whatever the hell True Detective Season 2 was about…

3) The Hay King (@btherr18)

Nothing better than a free cookie, but nothing worse than a bad cookie. On the whole, I don’t know how to feel about this free, bad cookie.

Free food actually don’t have any calories so I recommend that you always eat it regardless!

2) Paul Johnson (@thegoodgreatsby)

“Dance like there’s nobody watching.

Because your dance recital is the same time as your brother’s baseball game and we’re going to that.”

My son is only three so I’ve got a few years before every weekend becomes a continuum of scheduled activities and trust me, I am not looking forward to it. It’s not that I don’t want to support him, I do, I really do, just from afar. It’s the same stance that I take on all of the world’s affairs. I mean, I’m not actually going to vote or volunteer or do anything tangible to make the world a better place, but I am the first one to cheer when something good happens.

1) James Harness (@JamesHarness)

Don’t trust anyone who doesn’t know what it’s like to sleep a whole summer without air conditioning! They don’t know anything.

The best part of being rich is that I can afford for someone other than my Dad to cut my hair. The second is central air…

Below is a picture of Rachel and Oscar face-to-face snuggling. Have a wonderful weekend everybody!


week in TWEETS, , , , , , , ,

Butcher and the Rye – Downtown Pittsburgh

Butcher and the Rye is Pittsburgh’s bestest restaurant. Everything about it is par excellence – from the drinks to the décor to the cuisine. Their Brussels sprout are seriously one of the most delicious appetizers in the friggin’ world…and don’t even get me started on the scallops….or the pig candy…or the yuzu sour…or the hanger steak…etc.

Since all the superlatives in the world wouldn’t begin to explicate how awesome this place is, I decided that the only way to come close to conveying it’s greatness is to populate my review with semi-relevant quotes from the best movie of all time – Pulp Fiction. Please enjoy my review below, and remember, nobody kills anybody in my place of business except me or Zed.


I’m American, honey. Our names don’t mean shit.” – Butch


In your future… I see a cab ride. Move out of the sticks, gentlemen.” – The Wolf


Warmer! Warmer! Disco!” – Mia Wallace



Mmmm! Goddamn, Jimmie! This is some serious gourmet shit!” – Jules Winnfield


That’s a pretty f*cking good milkshake. I don’t know if it’s worth five dollars but it’s pretty f*cking good.” – Vincent Vega



Don’t you just love it when you come back from the bathroom and find your food waiting for you?” – Mia Wallace

Final Call

Bacon tastes gooood. Pork chops taste gooood.” – Vincent Vega

Butcher and the Rye Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

restaurant REVIEWS, , , , , , ,

My Mixtape Monday – May 30, 2016

First Name: Toby
Twitter: @theanalogdivide
Sex: Male
Age: 36

Occupation: Director of Digital Strategy, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Mixtape Name: This Song Will Save My Life

Side A
1) Blinded By the Lights by The Streets
2) I Let It Go by The Thermals
3) How We Land by P.O.S.
4) Pneumonia by Fog
5) It’s Gonna Take an Airplane by Destroyer
6) Get Up by Sleater-Kinney

Side B
7) Whatever Happened To You? by The Mendoza Line
8) Time Machine by Robyn
9) The Actress by The Delgados
10) The Past is a Grotesque Animal by Of Montreal
11) Brother’s Keeper by Aimee Mann
12) Smog Moon by Matthew Sweet

Liner Notes: November 2004. My girlfriend and I were making the drive down from Chicago to a wedding in the tail-end of southern Illinois. I had finished grad school four months earlier, and roughly 30 job applications had yet to bear fruit. I had depleted my savings and had no idea how long I could float by without getting a job.

Cut to the transmission falling out of my car, just outside of Champaign-Urbana.

One day later, we’re driving back home in a rental car, adding more on to my growing pile of credit card debt. I’m not sure where I’m going next, or even how I’m getting to my next job interview the next day. And if I do figure out how to get out there, I’ve got to interview in a suit jacket two sizes too large, thanks to my inadvertently swapping my own with another wedding guests’. I’m not entirely sure how I’m going to make it through the year, when The Streets’ “Blinded By the Lights” comes on the stereo.

Who knows what will happen tomorrow, but Jackie Rawe’s hook may have saved my life on this day.

The next day, I cajoled a friend to give me a ride to the suburbs, where I was offered my first professional job.

These are the songs that have appeared for me at precisely the right moment. Some are melancholy, some are bangers, some are in-between, but each one has been there right when I needed it. I hope you enjoy them.

Spotify Playlist link: This Song Will Save My Life


mixtape MONDAYS, , , , , , ,

My Mixtape Monday – May 23, 2016

First Name: Patrick
Twitter: @parkingchair
Sex: Male
Age: 50? Really?

Occupation: (Writer)

Mixtape Name: Music for Manic Depressives

Side A
1) Tether by Sarah Harmer
2) Two Star by Everything But the Girl
3) Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want by The Smiths
4) Good Day by Paul Westerberg
5) Until I Die by Ben Kweller
6) Promises by Badly Drawn Boy

Side B
7) Summertime by The Sundays
8) St. Croix by Family of the Year
9) Just Like Heaven by The Cure
10) Hard to Beat by Hard-Fi
11) Gimme Some Lovin’ by The Spencer Davis Group
12) Like Wow Wipeout by Hoodoo Gurus

Liner Notes: While I have never been clinically diagnosed as manic depressive or bipolar, I have always been one moody sonofabitch. In a good way. And music has been my companion on this lifelong journey of indecisive feelings. But I’ve never used music to alter my moods; rather, it has been an affirmation of the way I feel at any particular time. As it relates to Pittsburgh, this playlist could be organized by the times I am away from my hometown and missing it terribly—and the times I am actually there, remembering why I love it so much.

Side A is all about those times I feel like the world is terrible and no one sees things the way I do—or appreciates my brilliance. You know, the kind of world that could potentially elect a bombastic, fraudulent, hatemonger to the highest office in the land. Fortunately, we don’t live in that kind of world; it just feels that way. I think. I hope. Oh God, this may all be real! It’s a collection of six tunes I can always count on to ease me through a lousy day. With just a dash of hope in there to remind me that it always gets better.

Side B offers a glimpse into the flip side of my personality. Six songs that, no matter what’s happening, always make me smile. Songs that are infectiously happy, each with their own unique form of exuberant swagger. I dare anyone to listen to this group of songs and not feel like they just kissed Charlize Theron while swimming in shimmering blue Caribbean waters as your catamaran is anchored just off a secluded white sand beach. You’re welcome.

Indeed, everybody does love Alex, and I thank him for allowing me to take up a little space in your world with this rambling collection of words and music.

Spotify Playlist Link: Music for Manic Depressives

Mixtape - Pastel

mixtape MONDAYS, , , , , , ,

« previous page · next page »